SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - LinkedIn Corp forecast 2014 revenue below Wall Street's expectations, underscoring concerns about its ability to sustain its rapid growth and helping to drag its shares more than 3 percent lower on Thursday.
The social networking company, which is geared toward connecting professionals with prospective employers, foresees revenue of $500 million to $505 million (296 million to 299 million pounds) this quarter, compared with an average Wall Street forecast of $505.1 million.
For all of 2014, it expects sales of $2.06 billion to $2.08 billion - up from a previous forecast, but still lagging analysts' $2.11 billion target.
Its shares slid to $155.80 in after hours trading from a close of $161.22 on the New York Stock Exchange.
LinkedIn's tepid outlook overshadowed a higher-than-expected 46 percent increase in first-quarter revenue to $473.2 million, versus the $466.6 million expected by analysts on average, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
And it posted non-GAAP earnings of 38 cents a share, better than the 34 cents expected.
(Reporting by San Francisco newsroom; Editing by Steve Orlofsky and Andre Grenon)